35. Trade liabilities

Trade liabilities declined by €701 million. This decline was due mostly to the METRO Cash & Carry sales line, at €301 million, and Real, at €466 million.

Aside from the divestment of the cash & carry business in the United Kingdom in the financial year 2012, inventory optimising measures and lower shopping volumes due to greater consumption reticence in Western Europe, in particular, are key reasons for the decline in liabilities at METRO Cash & Carry.

The reduction in trade liabilities in the Real sales line is essentially due to the planned divestment of Real’s Eastern European business. As of the closing date of 31 December 2012, an amount of €508 million was reclassified from trade liabilities to the item “liabilities related to assets held for sale”.